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Wall Street Sees Heaps of Earnings Reports as Shutdown Rages

Ryan McQueeney

On today’s episode of the Zacks Friday Finish Line, Associate Stock Strategist Ryan McQueeney and Editor Maddy Johnson discuss the latest economic data from China and the United States. The hosts also recap earnings results from airline stocks as well as Intel, Starbucks, and more.

Make sure to subscribe and leave the show a rating on Apple Podcasts!

The partial government shutdown raged on this week, as competing bills to reopen all federal offices were blocked amid growing rhetorical tension between President Trump and Speaker Pelosi.

Wall Street continued to shrug its shoulders at the shutdown, however. Investors were much more interested in digesting the sentiment in Davos and the latest economic data from China and the United States.

On Monday, China announced that, in 2018, its economy grew at its slowest pace in nearly 30 years, punctuating fears of a global slowdown. But domestic investors got some reprieve from these slowdown concerns later in the week, when U.S. initial jobless claims came in at a 49-year low.

This mixed economic data was delivered during a busy week of earnings announcements. Several major airline companies reported this week, with the likes of American AAL, Southwest LUV, and JetBlue JBLU notching solid gains in the wake of earnings beats and generally optimistic outlooks.

The tech sector also saw its fair share of earnings reports this week. Notably, IT giant IBM IBM posted solid growth in key segments such as its Strategic Imperatives unit. IBM also published upbeat guidance, and its shares surged in the immediate aftermath.

Meanwhile, tech investors expressed mixed feelings about the semiconductor business. Texas Instruments TXN came up short on revenue and discussed how trade policy could potentially extend its cyclical pullback, yet the stock moved higher as chip bulls felt better about the industry’s sluggishness. Intel, on the other hand, slumped on the back of its revenue miss and muted guidance.

Wall Street also saw earnings results from Starbucks SBUX this week. The chain that put quality coffee on nearly every city corner is now a great read on the health of the global economy, and solid comps in the U.S. and China helped its stock move higher in after-hours trading Thursday.

What’s the secret to Starbucks’ recent success? What are the key takeaways from this week’s tech earnings report? Which airline stock impressed the most? Ryan and Maddy answer all of these questions, and more, only on today’s episode of the Zacks Friday Finish Line!

If you feel that we missed something, or if you want us to cover a different story, shoot us an email at podcast@zacks.com. Make sure to check out all of our other audio content at zacks.com/podcasts, and remember to subscribe and leave us a rating on Apple Podcasts.

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